Chicagoans: Why is My Home So Hot?

What do Chicagoans want to know about their hot days in the summer months at home… Why is my home so hot?

  1. How can I keep my home cool during Chicago’s hot summer days?

– Chicago summers can be quite intense, with temperatures often reaching the mid-80s to low-90s typically and over 100 occasionally with high humidity levels. To keep your home cool, consider using air conditioning, ceiling fans, and proper insulation such as spray foam. Additionally, keeping blinds closed during peak sunlight hours and using dehumidifiers can help manage indoor temperatures and humidity.  Turn your thermostat to “on” instead of “automatic” so that the air is constantly circulated from the warm areas of your home to the cooler areas.  Use bath fans to vent humidity when you shower or even when you cook.  Make sure the supplies and returns are not covered and that all interior doors are open, especially during the day to “mix the air” with the A/C turned “on”.

  1. What are the best air conditioning options for a Chicago home?

– The most efficient air conditioning systems for Chicago homes include central air conditioning units, “SpacePak” A/C and ductless mini-split systems. These systems provide consistent cooling and can handle the high humidity typical of Chicago summers. Regular maintenance and professional installation are key to ensuring these systems operate efficiently.

Oversizing of the A/C is not a good solution to making these systems work better, right sizing them and air sealing/ insulation that is done by a professional.

  1. How does humidity affect home comfort in Chicago during summer?

– High humidity levels, common in Chicago summers, can make the air feel much warmer than it is, leading to discomfort. Managing indoor humidity through air conditioning, dehumidifiers, and proper ventilation can significantly improve comfort levels. It’s recommended to keep indoor humidity levels between 30% and 50% to avoid issues like mold growth and excessive sweating.

A properly spray foamed room will reduce the tonnage needed to cool and average home by 50% over a non-spray foamed roof /attic.

  1. What are some energy-efficient ways to cool my home in Chicago?

– Ceiling fans help circulate air, making your home feel cooler without using as much energy as air conditioning units, and keeping the blinds closed during the hottest parts of the days.  Do as much of your cooking late in the night to minimize the amount of heat build up from cooking, in your home.

  1. Why is spray foam insulation recommended for Chicago homes in summer?

– Spray foam insulation provides a superior barrier against heat and air leakage, which is crucial for maintaining a cool indoor environment during Chicago’s hot and humid summers. It helps reduce the load on air conditioning systems, leading to lower energy bills and enhanced indoor comfort by maintaining consistent temperatures throughout the home.  A properly spray formed room will reduce the tonnage needed to cool and average home by 50% over a non-spray foamed roof /attic.  The temperature on the inside of a roof in Chicago, on the hottest days of the summer peaks at around 220 degrees.  The temperature on the inside of the foam at the roof peaks about 110 degrees.  When creating an “Unvented Attic” you allow the ducts to deliver air winter/ summer in a conditioned space.  Any HVAC equipment will work better in these controlled temperature areas than in a scorching hot attic/ frozen attic in the winter.

These questions reflect common concerns among Chicago homeowners looking to maintain comfort and efficiency during the hot summer months. Addressing these issues can lead to a more comfortable living environment and potentially lower energy costs, even before investing in the foam on the underside of your roof…. Keep that air circulating, use ceiling fans. Close your blinds, keep supplies and returns free of obstruction and any restrictions, vent the moisture out when created and do as much of the cooking as possible in the night/ over night time period to keep the stove/ oven off… add some cold soups to the mix.  Make sure all windows and doors are closed and sealed tight.

Lastly, We live in Chicago… Enjoy the warmth as the winters are MUCH LONGER than the hot temperatures that we can experience during the summer.

Comfort is only a FOAM CALL AWAY!  847-987-3626

About the Author, Tom Decker

With ten years of experience selling spray foam insulation in Chicago, Tom Decker is THE person to call and the Chicago Green Insulation is the organization to hire when you are looking for top notch quality and performance as well as someone who can deal with the needs of code officials, home owners and general contractors. Call the others in Chicago, if you are interested in the cheapest price, call Chicago Green Insulation if you are interested in using your dollars to make Chicago a better city for all of us!

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